The Week Ahead: The Week of October 22

By October 22, 2007General

A heavy week, as Congress rushes toward the Halloween recess…What? There’s no Halloween recess? Well, then, a heavy week nonetheless. And scary enough.

The Senate convenes at 2 p.m. and resumes consideration of H.R. 3043, Labor, HHS and Education appropriations. Schedule of committee hearings is here.

House starts business at 2:30 p.m today. Bunch O’ Suspensions (including H.R. 3776, creating a DOE program on energy storage technology). Bills on the House floor this week include H.R. 3685, prohibiting employment discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation (this version does not include “gender identity” as a protected class).

Chairman Charles Rangel (D-NY) of the Ways & Means Committee is expected to unveil his “mother of all tax bills” this week. (A story on the lobbying side of the issue here.) Majority Leader Hoyer says the House will return to a rewrite of the Foreign Service Intelligence Act this week; leadership pulled H.R. 3782 last week for lack of votes. And the House’s weekly schedule is here.

Senate Hearings: A Commerce subcommittee holds a hearing Tuesday on the Surface Transportation Board’s regulations of railroads. Also Tuesday, the full Environment and Public Works examines the human health effects of global warming; the next day, a EPW subcommittee considers S. 2191, the America’s Climate Security Act. The Ag Committee marks up the farm bill on Wednesday. Also Wednesday, Judiciary considers the role of federally funded university research in the patent system. And on Thursday, a Commerce Subcommittee holds a hearing on China’s toy industry sweatshops

House hearings: A Transportation subcommittee holds a hearing on bridge inspections Tuesday; the full committee holds a hearing Thursday on railroad safety. Investment in surface transportation infrastructure is the topic of a Budget Committee hearing Thursday, too. On Wednesday, the Homeland Security Committee considers the Secure Border Initiative Network, with Boeing executives testifying. The Financial Services Committee on Thursday considers the transparency of extractive industries, with a focus on international operations. The Small Business Committee on Wednesday a Small Business subcommittee holds a hearing on the disparities of retirement plans for small and large business; on Thursday the commitee considers the consolidation of the health care insurance industry and its effects on small business.

At 2:15 p.m. today the President presents the Medal of Honor posthumously to the family of Navy Lt. Michael Murphy, a Navy Seal who died in Afghanistan attempting to save his comrades in arms.

In Strasbourg, the European Parliament will talk about trade in disquieting ways: “The Commission will have an orientation debate on how the EU can best use trade defence instruments in a changing global economic context to protect jobs and growth.”

Finally, last week we noted the meeting of the World Bank here in Washington, commenting that the protests had declined in size. Apparently the anarchists took it as a challenge and rampaged through Georgetown on Friday, breaking windows and hurting bystanders. The people of Burundi are deeply thankful for the expression of concern, no doubt.

UPDATE (2:20 p.m.) The anti-globo-yobbos are still at it, getting arrested at the Cannon House Office Building. Probably hoping to impress Evo Morales.

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